Communication about corona – media reporting and trust during the Covid-19 pandemic – English summary

The corona pandemic has been a dominant topic in public discourse since the winter of 2020. In collaboration with researchers at Södertörn University and Karolinska Institutet, VA (Public & Science) has conducted a study to investigate how people in Sweden are receiving and interpreting information about the pandemic, and how the pandemic is being reported by the media. The objective was to investigate what influences people’s perceptions in a crisis situation where research and researchers play a central role amidst a constantly changing flow of information.

The study consisted of two parts, in which we:

  1. monitored the Swedish public’s perceptions of the media reporting on the coronavirus and people’s confidence in various professions that comment on the virus in the Swedish news media. The collected data consists of 16 online surveys conducted during the period March 2020 – April 2021. A minimum of 1,000 people participated in each survey.
  2. analysed the content of online news articles on the coronavirus and research on Swedish Television (SVT), in the morning daily newspaper Dagens Nyheter (DN) and in the tabloid Aftonbladet at five different time periods between April 2020 – May 2021. The time periods coincided with three peaks and two falls in the infection rate and hospital admissions in Sweden.

Download the English summary of the report as a PDF.

The study on ”Communication about corona – media reporting and trust during the Covid-19 pandemic” has been carried out by the non-profit Swedish organisation VA (Public & Science) in collaboration with researchers from Karolinska Institutet and Södertörn University. The full report is available in Swedish only.

The study is supported by Anne-Marie och Gustaf Anders Stiftelse för mediaforskning, Karolinska Institutet, LIF – the research-based pharmaceutical industry, Södertörn University, the Wenner-Gren Foundations and the Swedish Research Council.

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